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John Parker

The Magical Land of Childhood Trauma: Should You Be Reading ‘The Fiction’?

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In Curt Pires and David Rubin's The Fiction for Boom Studios, a magical book makes the imaginary real, and two lifelong friends re-enter the fantastic world it contains in search of two more of their group who disappeared into The Fiction. The "Step Into a Good Book" library program might want to work out a new campaign.

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Hatred, Hope, And Horror: Should You Be Reading ‘War Stories’?

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Good war comics are much harder to come by than they used to be, but there's at least one source that will remain consistent. Garth Ennis has written some of the most emotionally compelling and contextually complex stories in the genre over the course of his career, and that continues with Avatar's War Stories, with artist Tomas Aira.

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Eddie Campbell and the Mythology of Minutiae

Detail from a self-portrait by Eddie Campbell
Detail from a self-portrait by Eddie Campbell

Eddie Campbell was born on this day in 1955. Comics' greatest raconteur, Campbell has been chronicling memories, spinning yarns, and chasing trains of thought since the early 80s, influencing entire generations of creators along the way.

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Filed Under: , , , Category: Anniversaries, Art

41 Years Ago: The First Appearance of Wolverine, The Best There Is At What He Does

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On July 30th, 1974, Wolverine made his first full appearance in The Incredible Hulk #181, and comics history was forever changed. For some reason. Somehow, a funny-looking, funny-talking, pint-sized, hairy Canadian, who literally scratches people, became one of the most popular characters in comics. How did the guy with whiskers on his mask become the epitome of toughness?

Created by Len Wein and John Romita, and brought to life by Herb Trimpe, Wolverine could have easily become another throwaway character. With his bright yellow-and-blue costume, he looks at least as ridiculous as every other one-and-done character, save for the arresting hook of those razor-sharp claws.

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Remembering Joe Shuster, The First Superhero Artist

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On July 10th, 1914, Joe Shuster was born to a pair of Jewish immigrants living in Toronto. As a young man living in Cleveland, Shuster befriended another first-generation American named Jerry Siegel, and together the two created both a genre and an icon with Superman.

The years of legal battles and ignominy are well-known, but it's important to think of Shuster as more than a tale of woe. Let's take a moment to consider Shuster's greatest contribution to comics: raw power.

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Filed Under: , , Category: Anniversaries, DC

Prepping for Re-Entry with ‘Astronauts In Trouble’

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Reissues give you a chance to re-read an old book --- maybe even a a mostly-forgotten one --- with fresh eyes. Now that Image is reprinting Larry Young and Charlie Adlard's Astronauts In Trouble in its entirety, a lot of readers get to look back on a book that had a lot of buzz surrounding it near the turn of the century.

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Why Vaughan and Harris’s ‘Ex Machina’ Was Among the Most Important Comics of the 2000s

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On this date in 2004, Brian K. Vaughan and Tony Harris's Ex Machina #1 debuted, beginning a fifty-issue run that is widely considered one of the best comics of the 2000s. More specifically than that, though, it's the most real-world relevant superhero comic... ever?

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Understanding Scott McCloud, Comics’ Great Teacher

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Scott McCloud was born on this day in 1960, as Scott McLeod. (Like all great self-made iconoclasts, he changed his name.) Cartoonist, scholar, orator, inventor, and champion, Scott McCloud is one of the most important creators of his era, and perhaps the Ben Franklin of comics.

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